Culinary experts get inventive at EDP Norfolk Food and Drink Awards Chef of the Year competition
PUBLISHED: 18:53 16 August 2017 | UPDATED: 09:43 17 August 2017
Up-and-coming chefs got to put their own spin on a traditional dessert for a prestigious county-wide culinary contest.
The annual EDP Norfolk Food and Drink Awards Chef of the Year competition saw eight professionals battle it out in the kitchen at the City College Norwich Hotel School on Wednesday, August 16.
About half were former students of the well-established training centre and they had three hours to create a starter, main and dessert.
Competitors were Alex Clare from the Ingham Swan; Barry Wood from the Maids Head Hotel in Norwich; Jason Wright from the Loddon Swan; Tom Navarro from Brasted’s restaurant in Framingham Pigot; Charlie Wilson from The Wildebeest in Stoke Holy Cross; George Dack from Norwich’s Warwick Street Social restaurant; Thomas Kingston from Chartwells Independent catering firm; and Trevor Clarke from the Duke’s Head Hotel in King’s Lynn.
They were whittled down from 20 original applicants and were given the basic ingredients of a bavarois - a set cream pudding - but could create their own adaptation of the sweet treat.
The other two savoury courses, which featured local produce, could be any dish.
Crab, mackerel and brown shrimps were the stars of some of the dishes and each of them were judged blind by three experts on taste and appearance.
The chefs were also judged separately on the way they worked in the kitchen, including hygiene and preparation.
Joe Mulhall, curriculum programme manager at the City College Norwich Hotel School, said: “I’m really excited and impressed to see how people have developed since they left us. We have got great food and Norfolk has one of the best food festivals in the country. Food helps put Norwich and Norfolk on the map.”
Steve Thorpe, assistant principal of City College Norwich, which sponsored the contest, said: “The competition is to recognise chefs performing at the top of their profession.
“More and more people want to get involved in it.”
He added people in the hospitality industry viewed the EDP Norfolk Food and Drink Awards Chef of the Year as a prestigious title.
The winner will be revealed on September 15 at the main EDP Norfolk Food and Drink Awards prize-giving event.
The EDP Norfolk Food and Drink Awards 2017, in association with the East of England Co-op, celebrates the very best of Norfolk’s food and drink industry.
Award categories include:
Outstanding Achievement Award (sponsored by Hansells Solicitors and Financial Advisers);
Chef of the Year (sponsored by City College Norwich);
Best Family Dining (sponsored by Makro and Booker Wholesale);
Best Afternoon Tea (sponsored by Castlemeadow Care);
Outstanding Front of House (sponsored by Broadland Wineries);
Pride of Norfolk (sponsored by Norse Catering);
Field to Fork (sponsored by Easton and Otley College);
Best Coffee/Tea Shop (sponsored by EDP and EDP Norfolk magazine);
Best Newcomer (sponsored by Zaks);
Best Pub (sponsored by Lacons);
Best Restaurant (sponsored by Gerald Giles);
Best Independent Food and Drink Retailer (sponsored by EDP).